Parasitology

Parasites

Parasites include a wide range of organisms from all Domains of Life. For humans, livestock, and pets, we typically focus on protozoa, helminths, and ectoparasites. To be a parasite, their life depends upon feeding in or on another organism. Another requirement for the parasite label is that their presence causes the host organism harm. When the organism doesn’t bother the host one way or another, the organisms would be considered a commensal. If it benefits the host, we call them symbiont. Parasites comprise a major section of focus for preventive medicine.

Ruminant Abortion: What's Your Differential?

Author: Kayla Wells, DVM, MPH, DACVPM

The ACVPM exam is over, and you decide to reward your hard work with a relaxing night out. While at supper, you are drawn into a nearby conversation with fellow ACVPM candidates discussing a recent outbreak of abortions in local sheep and goats back home in Kenya.

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Foreign Filoviridade: Ebola

Author: Kayla Wells, DVM, MPH, DACVPM

Ebola hemorrhagic fever no longer exists as a mysterious disease in the jungles of Africa. It has once again reared its ugly head, this time moving into more populated areas. This becomes an emerging public health threat quickly. With the rate of human travel, an infected individual could be anywhere in the world in as little as 24 hours.

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S & M with Ticks! - Ticks of North American Part 1

Author: Christopher Lee, DVM, DACVPM

Since people have looked out at their natural world, they have sought to classify and understand all life, including ticks. Pliny the Elder wrote the first natural history text around 79 AD. He noticed ticks preferred some species of mammal over others. Pliny witnessed ticks feed, massively expand, release eggs, and then die.

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Opossum Disease: EPM

Author: Kayla Wells, DVM, MPH, DACVPM

Omnivorous opossums creep quietly through the night, in search of a meal of just about anything. Many benefits come from having opossums for neighbors, including insect, tick and rodent control. If you are a horse owner, opossums can be your worst enemy.

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Mycobacterium Basics

Author: Kayla Wells, DVM, MPH, DACVPM

What do skinny cows, armadillos, elephants and coughing humans have in common?  Turns out, they all play host to a very malicious genus of bacteria.  All of these are zoonotic, chronic infections, with few effective treatment options.    

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Bobcat Fever

Author: Kayla Wells, DVM, MPH, DACVPM

First described in Missouri in 1970, Cytauxzoon felis is a tick-transmitted protozoan within the family Theileriidae.  Bobcats and recovered domestic cats act as reservoir hosts for Amblyomma americanum (Lone Star tick).

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A Small Kiss Leads to a Broken Heart

Author: Kayla Wells, DVM, MPH, DACVPM

The kissing bug evokes thoughts of Valentine’s Day, young love, chocolate, and chagomas.  The last would not be something you want to receive from your true love.

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The White Nose Curse

Author: Kayla Wells, DVM, MPH, DACVPM

The bat lives as a small, unassuming creature.  Most people fear them, and rightly so.  Bats are known vectors of rabies.  But, they should be thought of as protectors of humans.  Bats silently guard us nightly from diseases such as West Nile, Zika, chikungunya, and dengue fever.

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Contagious Equine Metritis

Author: Kayla Wells, DVM, MPH, DACVPM

It's springtime again, and you should already have your mare booked to a stallion. If you have a Quarter Horse, you have the advantage of being able to utilize artificial insemination. If you choose live cover, there are a few infectious diseases you should be concerned about. One foreign animal disease (FAD) to remember is Contagious Equine Metritis (CEM).

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Cytokine Storms, Stronger than World War I and Kublai Khan

Author: Christopher Lee, DVM, DACVPM

Long before the current use of the word kamikaze, Japanese used “divine wind,” the name translation, in a literal sense. In the thirteenth century, the largest contiguous empire the world has ever seen sailed its formidable armada and all its might towards the shores of Japan.

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A Tale of Two Mosquitos

Author: Kayla Wells, DVM, MPH, DACVPM

Ah, spring. It is the best of times, it is the worst of mosquitoes. It is the season of light, it is the season of disease. While Dickens described the French Reign of Terror, we will discuss the mosquito Reign of Terror organizing in your backyard.

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Buruli Ulcer: How does this not hurt?

Author: Kayla Wells, DVM, MPH, DACVPM

Known by many names, including Buruli ulcer, Barnsdale ulcer and Mossman ulcer, infection with Mycobacterium ulcerans causes severe, debilitating ulcers of the skin and soft tissue.  This bacterium is in the same genus as tuberculosis and leprosy. 

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Island Paradise and Vampire Worms

Author: Christopher Lee, DVM, DACVPM

Hookworms crawled and twisted their way into the news this week by means of a romantic Canadian couple strolling barefoot along the beautiful sands of Punta Cana beach. Hookworms, a type of roundworm, can infect humans, dogs, cats, cattle, rodents and a few other species through a couple of crafty routes.

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I DO Give a Gram!

Author: Christopher Lee, DVM, DACVPM

The Gram Stain differentiates gram-positive bacteria, which have one membrane, from gram-negative bacteria, which have two membranes. We glean significant information from gram-typing, whether you are a healthcare provider or just an average mammal trying to get by in this world.

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Peste des Petis Ruminants

Author: Kayla Wells, DVM, MPH, DACVPM

Peste des petits ruminants. While it is French, it is not something fancy that you would want to receive as a gift from your beloved. It is commonly referred to as sheep plague or goat plague and is decimating the small ruminate population in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East.

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Smoking out the defintion of typhus

Author: Christopher Lee DVM, DACVPM

Typhus, apoplexy, dysentery, dropsy, and coryza are all medical terms of yesteryear, and many of these words have not survived in common medical usage. This is due, in large part, to a lack of specificity in their meaning.  Learn more about this disease.

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Well, cholera me crazy

Author: Christopher Lee DVM, DACVPM

You didn't think that cholera was just something our great-grandfather's dad had to contend with do you? It is alive and well today. We will coover what to watch out for in 2018. Learn more about this disease.

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Q Fever

Author: Kayla Wells DVM, MPH, DACVPM

With a name like Q fever, you would expect this disease to be obscure and rare.  The name comes from “query” fever because the true cause of the disease was unknown for many years.

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Murine Typhus

Author: Kayla Wells DVM, MPH, DACVPM

Typhus sounds remotely familiar, right?  It is another one of those diseases from the past?  Not so fast.  It is actually an emerging disease is some areas of Texas, Hawaii, and California.

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I just don't give a Gram!

Author: Christopher Lee DVM, DACVPM

 

Gosh, Gram it! Why is it that every time I take a class or read an article that involves bacteria, there is an insistence on explaining whether it is gram-negative or gram-positive? Who cares?  No gram-nonsense involved right?

Let’s take a closer look at gram typing and what practical importance it has.

 

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Biosafety Level Labs

Author: Kayla Wells DVM, MPH, DACVPM

Learn about Biosafety Level Labs. It may sound scary but it is a fascinating topic. There are four levels and chances are that you have been in at least one of them! 

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The Black Death: Plague

Author: Kayla Wells DVM, MPH, DACVPM

Learn about the past? Actually, learn about the present! There are outbreaks of plague around the world as well as within the United States on a regular basis. Here we will discuss the basics about the Black Death.

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Rabbit Fever

Author: Kayla Wells DVM, MPH, DACVPM

Rabbit fever is a disease caused by the bacterium Francisella tularensis and is contagious to humans. Veterinarians are at particular risk. 

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Anthrax

Author: Kayla Wells DVM, MPH, DACVPM

While most people are aware of anthrax as a bioterrorism agent, most don’t realize that it is common in many areas of the US, including Texas, the Dakotas, Nevada, and parts of Minnesota. The disease has been reported worldwide.

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Foot and Mouth Disease

Author: Kayla Wells DVM, MPH, DACVPM

Foot and mouth disease (FMD) is a highly contagious, and economically devastating, viral disease of over 70 species of wild and domestic cloven-hoofed mammals.  Vesicles on susceptible species have to be differentiated from vesicular stomatitis, swine vesicular disease, or vesicular exanthema of swine. 

 

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Raccoon Roundworm

Author: Kayla Wells DVM, MPH, DACVPM

Baylisascaris procyonis is the name of the roundworm found in raccoons.  People are not the normal host for this worm.  Because of this, the worm can cause severe, and sometimes, fatal disease in people. 

 

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Rabies

Author: Kayla Wells DVM, MPH, DACVPM

Rabies remains a serious public health concern in the US. Rabies is generally considered 100% fatal, and only a few humans have ever survived the disease.

 

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Camp Low Bacteria, Diarrhea is coming to me

Author: Christopher Lee DVM, DACVPM

Cute puppies can bring you more than just smiles and companionship.  Read this article about a Campylobacter outbreak in early September 2017 across twelve states.

 

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Do you or your pet suffer from Beaver Fever?

Author: Christopher Lee DVM, DACVPM

Beaver Fever is just a protozoal infection obtained from the consumption of contaminated water or food. Giardia is seen throughout the world and is maintained by asymptomatic carriers in the wild.   We will discuss ways to avoid this infection!

 

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